Sunday, April 28, 2013

Speaker Mastermind Meet Up

It is not a secret that I credit part of my success as a professional speaker to my involvement with the National Speakers  Association.  It is not that the association itself does anything that directly brings me business, but I have had the opportunity to meet so many talented professionals at all levels of experience, that I have become a better speaker, a better business owner, and a better person from what my peers consistently teach me.

In addition to my participation in the national association, I am involved with the Austin Chapter of NSA, and I am on the board of a "virtual chapter" within NSA called "NSA XY" (we are not officially recognized as a chapter, but we operate in a similar manner).  The XY group is made up of speakers born in 1964 or later (and while some like to say it is a group of "younger speakers", the oldest in our group are quickly approaching 50-years-old - so it is NOT about age!).

Recently the NSA XY hosted a "Meet Up".  These informal day-long gatherings have been held from time to time around  the country for several years (with the majority of them being held in Chicago).  The purpose of a Meet Up is to bring together speakers to share best practices, engage in discussions about the business, and brainstorm ideas to help each other expand business.  It is also about friendships.  Speaking can be a lonely profession, as no two speakers I know have identical business models.  We work alone, travel alone, and often only see the industry from our own lonely vantage point.  For those of us who have forged connections with other speakers, we see the network as a powerful tool to stay informed and a way to push forward to the cutting edge.

Having never before attended a Meet Up, I was not sure what to expect.  Some of my peers (mainly non-NSA speakers) question what I can gain from spending time with other speakers?  Since many in attendance were already friends, would it be too social?  Was there any way to measure success?  

WOW is the only word I have to describe the experience.  I not only got to learn from my peers, but the group helped me clarify an idea for a new program that closely aligns with my experience and my passion.  Alone I had spent weeks trying to shake out the specifics for a new topic, and together we came up with the idea in twenty minutes.  This is the power of being open to coaching, but also it was a powerful exercise in how people can accomplish more together than alone.

No matter what your industry, I encourage you to get involved in an association of your peers.  Too many people sneer at their competition, but my experience show that those who share your path can be the best asset in your future success.

There were 12 speakers involved in this day-long mastermind session.  I encourage anyone who reads this blog post to click on each of the names below.... as it will expose you to some incredible people who are doing great things.  If you are looking to hire a speaker, anyone of them would be a wise choice.... as they are more than "experts", they are speakers who are dedicated to their craft.  

Have A Great Day

thom singer

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